Review: The Barber of Seville, Glyndebourne Tour, Norwich Theatre Royal

Glyndebourne's Il barbiere di Siviglia. Photo: Bill Cooper

Glyndebourne's Il barbiere di Siviglia. Photo: Bill Cooper - Credit: Bill Cooper

Review: Frank Cliff is delighted by Glyndebourne's touring production of The Barber of Seville.

Annabel Arden's production of Rossini's great comic masterpiece, revived for Glyndebourne Tour 2017 by Sinead O'Neill, is fast-moving and very funny, if occasionally verging on slapstick.

Excellent individual performances, with Tobias Greenhalgh's initial show-stopping 'largo al factotum' establishing him instantly as a truly charismatic Figaro. Laura Verrecchia is an alluring Rosina, her rich mezzo coping equally well with Rossini's high colaratura, and Jack Swanson's fine lyric tenor ensures a fine Count Almaviva. Both Marco Filippo Romano as Bartolo and Anatoli Sivko as Basilio give characterful performances, Romano delivering Bartolo's patter song brilliantly, while Janis Kelly made Berta's aria the high spot of Act II.

Rossini's tricky ensembles were nigh flawless, brilliantly held together by conductor Ben Gerdon, who also drew excellent playing from the Glyndebourne Touring Orchestra.

A total joy.

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